Purchases by North Indian buyers and overseas demand have pushed up orthodox tea prices in the Kochi auctions this week.

Traders said non-availability of the brew in the North Indian auctions due to the winter holidays has forced buyers from there to scout for tea from South India. Sale 14 witnessed strong demand, with 93 per cent of the 1,71,758 kg offered being sold.

Arrivals lower

Arrivals at the auction were lower due to hot weather conditions in the production centres. This rising trend is likely to continue for some weeks and it depends on the arrival of the first flush in North India, traders said.

The auctioneers Forbes, Ewart & Figgis said the average price realisation was up by ₹2 at ₹162, with whole leaf firm to dearer, especially for lower end teas. High-priced teas declined. Exporters to West Asia and the CIC countries were active.

Of the 49,000 kg of CTC leaf offered, 88 per cent was sold. The market for good liquoring teas remained barely steady. Major packeteers lent fair support.

In CTC dust, good liquoring teas were steady to firm, and occasionally dearer. The market also witnessed some withdrawals, especially high-priced teas. Eighty-eight per cent of the 7,69,176 kg offered was sold. Major packateers, loose tea traders and upcountry buyers lent fair support.

In Orthodox dust, the market was lower, with 42 per cent of the 12,500 kg offered being sold. Exporters and upcountry buyers absorbed a small quantity.